Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you. —Anne Lamott, Salon, April 10, 2015
“All humans understand and use story on an intuitive level. It’s our most effective teaching tool.” — Deb Norton, “Story Structure, Simplified,” WritersDigest, February 2017
What makes a happy reader? Robert Keiner answers, “It’s all about being invited in by the writer. If a writer begins showing off with obscure or precious writing, that gets in the readers’ way. . . The job of the writer is to ignite a fictional daydream in the brain of the reader and then step away and become invisible so the story becomes the readers’ own.” — WritersDigest, February 2017
“Forgiveness liberates the soul,” Mandela explained to a crowd. “That’s why it’s such a powerful weapon.” The movie “Invictus,” featuring Matt Damon, Clint Eastwood and Morgan Freeman is about Nelson Mandela, who spent 27 years in prison. After he was released and elected as South Africa’s first black president, he preached reconciliation. When he decided to support the country’s rugby team — long a symbol of white oppression — his countrymen were stunned. “Forgiveness liberates the soul,” Mandela explained to a crowd. “That’s why it’s such a powerful weapon.” When writing, especially freewrites, you may experience epiphanies that will enlighten and inform you. Best wishes to you as you write. Just write.
Helen Sedwick, author of Coyote Winds, believes “Memoirists are the bravest of writers.” “In exploring the journeys of their lives, they [memoirists] delve into the private (and imperfect) lives of others. Can a memoirist write about surviving abuse without getting sued by her abuser? Can a soldier write about war crimes without risking a court-martial? Helen answers these questions in her guest blog post “A Memoir is not a Voodoo Doll.” We lead rich lives, most of us. Rich in experiences, in friendships, in family, and in our work. I think you can find riches to write about. So, whatchya waitin’ for? Start writing. And don’t worry about a thing. Just write.
Poet Mary Oliver was born in 1935 in Maple Heights, Ohio. She had an unhappy childhood and spent most of her time outside, wandering around the woods, reading and writing poems. From the time she was young, she knew that writers didn’t make very much money, so she sat down and made a list of all the things in life she would never be able to have — a nice car, fancy clothes, and eating out at expensive restaurants. But Mary decided she wanted to be a poet anyway. Mary tried college, but dropped out. She made a pilgrimage to visit Edna St. Vincent Millay’s 800-acre estate in Austerlitz, New York. The poet had been dead for several years, but Millay’s sister Norma lived there. Mary and Norma hit it off, and Mary lived there for years, helping out on the estate, keeping Norma company, and working on her own…
“Life will go on as long as there is someone to sing, to dance, to tell stories and to listen.” —Oren Lyons Share your story at: StoryShelter, “a free service that lets you write down the personal stories of your life, save them and selectively share them. StoryShelter was founded in 2012 by Melisa Singh.”
“If we write about our pain, we heal gradually, instead of feeling powerless and confused, and we move to a position of wisdom and power.” — Writing As A Way of Healing by Louise DeSalvo
Neil Gaiman, excerpt from Brain Pickings, “Why We Read and What Books Do for the Human Experience“ When you watch TV or see a film, you are looking at things happening to other people. Prose fiction is something you build up from twenty-six letters and a handful of punctuation marks, and you, and you alone, using your imagination, create a world, and people it and look out through other eyes. You get to feel things, visit places and worlds you would never otherwise know. You learn that everyone else out there is a me, as well. You’re being someone else, and when you return to your own world, you’re going to be slightly changed. — Neil Gaiman Neil Gaiman on Why We Read and What Books Do for the Human Experience
This Write Spot Blog Post is inspired by The Writings of Tim Lawrence, The Adversity Within, Shining Light on Dark Places. Tim offers ideas in his blog post about helping someone who is grieving: “I acknowledge your pain. I am here with you.” “Grief is brutally painful. Grief does not only occur when someone dies. When relationships fall apart, you grieve. When opportunities are shattered, you grieve. When dreams die, you grieve. When illnesses wreck you, you grieve. So I’m going to repeat a few words I’ve uttered countless times: Some things in life cannot be fixed. They can only be carried. These words come from my dear friend Megan Devine, one of the only writers in the field of loss and trauma I endorse. These words are so poignant because they aim right at the pathetic platitudes our culture has come to embody on an increasingly hopeless level. Losing a child cannot…